Are you a robot? A spammer? A sock puppet? A trusted author and content developer? A trusted agent in the eyes of Google? (More on trusted agents below.)
When you interact on a social network, or write a review online or update information to an internet mapping service, how much does the service you are using trust the content that you add, or the changes that you might make?
These aren’t rhetorical questions, but rather ones at the heart of approaches from services like Google Web search and Google Maps, which are focusing more and more upon social signals and social collaboration to provide the information that they do to the public.
If you’ve seen a +1 button within Google’s search results or on a site, and you’ve clicked upon it, or shared a page or post or site in Google Plus with others, you’ve engaged in endorsing the work of the author who created that site. How much weight does Google give that endorsement?
If you find an error on a Google Place page, such as an incorrect phone number or bad street address, and you take the time to try to correct that, what process might Google go through to decide if you’re telling the truth?